Protocol for Auditions, esp. callbacks with the Director
The other day I got to run camera for an audition while the Director was in the room. It allowed me to see how actors behave when the client is in the room. Here are some things I felt needed to be addressed:
1) Always bring at least 2 headshots to EVERY AUDITION, including those at Houghton. I got a couple blank stares this time around when I asked for 2 headshots. Yes, normally we don’t need them, but always be prepared. And don’t make us pull from your folder at Houghton. That’s depleting the headshots we need to send to clients.
2) Do NOT bring baggage into the room. I’m referring to the bad (or good) things going on in your life (although bringing lots of personal items into the room is not favorable either). Sometimes actors decide to offer up how their day/week/life is going, and usually it’s unprovoked. Especially if what you have to share is negative, keep your mouth shut. If things are that bad, don’t come to the audition.
3) On the same topic, don’t engage in a lot of small talk with the client, unless they are driving the conversation. There’s a good chance that 5 or so people are in the waiting room, so minimize the time you’re in the room. A short audition is not a bad audition. In fact, the actors who were in the room the shortest amount of time were the best prepared and gave the best reads.
4) If you get an e-mail from Houghton about an audition, and there is nothing to indicate that it’s an improvised audition, that means there’s a script. That means you should look for an attachment. If you don’t find the attachment, or can’t open it, you need to e-mail the agent back immediately to resolve it. What you should NEVER EVER do is wait until you’re next at the audition and then tell me (or Vince or Chase) that you didn’t get a script. It’s extremely unprofessional.
Overall, and I’ve said this in a prior post, when I open that door and say “next”, you should be prepared to come straight in and knock it out in one take. Don’t ever let me or any casting director, producer, director, etc., know that you’re about to give anything but your best. Don’t give ANY excuses, and don’t blame your agent for messing up your appointment time or not getting you a script.